I really like Nico Laeser’s writing. He’s got a smooth, easy style that sucks you in and brings the story to life. I’ve already reviewed Skin Cage and Harmonic: Resonance and just like those two books, Laeser brings his trademark wordsmithery to Enablers Anonymous. Also, just like Skin Cage and Harmonic: Resonance, Enablers Anonymous is hard book to drop into a single category. That’s not a bad thing. Genre bending is a very good thing to see in a writer. Witness Kurt Vonnegut, a man who I still struggle to categorize, but whose works I absolutely adore.
Maybe that’s why I like Laeser’s books so much. Just like real life, they defy the petty attempts of humans to shelve them. As such, they’re best left on the coffee table for more people to read and experience.
Enabler’s Anonymous follows the life and times of a self described loser. A fuck-up who has few (if any) fucks left to give. Life being the chaotic maelstrom that it is, Jimmy winds up doing more than he ever thought he could. As the old song (and saying) goes, “Only cream and bastards rise”. Our hero fakes it until he makes it and finds himself standing atop a self-help empire and wondering not only how he got there, but whether or not he even deserves it.
It’s part Fight Club (without the fighting) and part Catcher In The Rye and part sequence of events that seem so realistic, you can’t help but wonder why this hasn’t happened to you.
Toss in an interesting group of supporting characters, including a group of fantasy gamers, the smarmiest boss on Earth, and a coffee cup that brings a delightful bit of irony, and you’ve got a cracking good tale.
“By now, everyone knows the name James King.
They see me on top of this block-tower pedestal, and it seems they’re all trying to knock it down, scraping away the lies I used to glue it all together.
I went from warehouse loser, worst employee of the month, to self-help superstar and media flavor of the month, using the tried and tested method—fake it until you make it.
What I made was a media monster. Now, an angry mob is at my door, wielding pitchforks and flaming torches, screaming, “Down with the Placebo Messiah!”
Ignore what the critics, and my absentee shoulder angel, tell you—I’m not all bad. Come in and help yourself to the complimentary food, but go easy on the coffee creamer or you’ll be up all night. It’s time for me to confess the true version of my story—I’m about to tell all.*
*including where to find the tastiest breakfast wraps in town.”
Nico’s also an artist and musician (which makes me feel humble and pretty boring)